The American Empire in a Changing World


Saturday, March 31, 2012

''Iran's internal dynamics''

very interesting.........from caspian report....

''Gerald Celente - The Alex jones Show - 26 March 2012''

alex and gerald...for 72 minutes...

''Will Russia ever have Alaska back?''

From Voice of Russia

"One hundred forty-five years ago today, on March 30, 1867, Russia sold Alaska and the Aleutian Islands to the US. Since then many Russians have been wondering why their government made such a decision. Sergei Sayenko attempts to answer the question. 

Let us first have a look at the history. Discovered in 1732 by a Russian expedition led by Mikhail Gvozdyov and Ivan Fedorov, Alaska remained the only North American land owned by Russia. The development of Alaska`s territory was supervised by private investors and not the government. Before 1867 Alaska had been owned by the special state-sponsored Russian-American Company. After serfdom was abolished in Russia in 1861, to compensate landowners Emperor Alexander II had to borrow £15 million from the Rothschilds. But Russia had no money to pay off the debt. And then Alexander`s younger brother Konstantin suggested selling something Russia did not need much."

''Minority report: Era of total surveillance zooms-in on US?''

From RT

''Libyan tribal clashes kill at least 147 people''

From The Guardian

"Libya's health minister has said that 147 people have been killed during six days of tribal clashes in a remote southern desert town.
Fatima Hamroush said that the fighting in Sabha has also left 395 wounded and that 180 people have been transported to the capital, Tripoli, for emergency treatment."

''US denies leaking info on Israeli access to Azeri airbases''

From YNet News

"A top White House official denied Saturday that the US Administration was responsible for leaking information, alleging that Israel has secured access to airfields in Azerbaijanahead of a possible strike on Iran's nuclear facilities, to the press.

On Thursday, Foreign Policy magazine reported that Baku had granted Jerusalem permission to use four abandoned, Soviet-era airbases, where IAF fighter jets could refuel in case of a strike against the Islamic Republic."

UK: "How protest is being outlawed"

From New Statesman

"The message being sent may as well have been printed on official police stationary and distributed outside the court: in protest situations, police are never in the wrong. Meadows is among the most high profile of dozens of protesters who have been tried for serious public order offences over the past eighteen months. As emergency measures against public assembly and popular protest are passed in time for the Olympics, any political direct action more energetic than standing silently with a few signs in designated areas is becoming functionally illegal in Britain."

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''Senators Who Voted To Protect Oil Tax Breaks Received $23,582,500 From Big Oil''

From OpEd News

"The only two Republicans to break rank were Sen. Susan Collins (R-ME) and retiring Sen. Olympia Snowe (R-ME). A Think Progress Green analysis shows how oil and gas companies have funneled cash to the same senators who protected its handouts: -- The 47 senators voting against the bill have received $23,582,500 in career contributions from oil and gas."

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''China rejects Obama's Iran oil import sanctions''

From AP

"China rejected President Barack Obama's decision to move forward with plans for sanctions on countries buying oil from Iran, saying Saturday that Washington had no right to unilaterally punish other nations.
South Korean officials said they will continue working with the U.S. to reduce oil imports from Iran, as other U.S. allies who depend on Iranian oil worked to find alternative energy supplies."

Wisconsin: "Clintonville’s reign of terror from mysterious booms continues''

From Extinction Protocol 

"Geological officials said Wednesday they are considering putting a seismometer in a Wisconsin city where a small earthquake was recorded last week after strong booms and rumblings shook residents once again. Clintonville police received 65 calls Tuesday night between 10:35 p.m. and 11:40 p.m. and another 19 calls came in between 3:25 a.m. and 11:30 a.m. Wednesday, Clintonville Police Chief Terry Lorge said. Several of the booms were heard by officials at City Hall, he said. "

Gordon Duff: "Israeli Bases in Azerbaijan, VT from 2010''

From Veterans Today

"A week ago, Israel leaked to the press that they had permission from Saudi Arabia to use their air space to attack Iran. The Saudi’s quickly denied this. The effort on Israel’s part was a ruse to cover their real plans, to attack from the Republic of Georgia, close to Iran’s northern border. However, the breakdown in relations with Turkey after miscalculating the response to their Flotilla raid on a Turkish ship in international waters may have ended this operation.
Israel, whose arms agreements with Turkey mounted to nearly $5 billion dollars over a period of years, had been training pilots in Turkey for bombing attacks on Iran. During these training missions, Israel was smuggling aircraft through Turkish airspace."

''Saudis in Eastern Province hold fresh protest rallies''

From Strategic Culture

"People in Saudi Arabia's oil-rich Eastern Province have staged fresh protest rallies, chanting slogans against Crown Prince Nayef bin Abdul-Aziz, Press TV reports.

The demonstrations were held on Friday although Riyadh had strictly banned any anti-government gatherings and other public displays of dissent across the country."

''Dead End Economics: The Curse Of Neoclassical Thinking''

From Economy Watch

"Neoclassical economics has led us into a cul-de-sac. Although alternatives do exist, neoclassical thought has been so deeply entrenched into our finance ministries, economics departments, banks and other financial institutions, until a widespread belief has now materialised: that fictions like “perfect markets” and “efficient market hypothesis” are real."

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Cashless: ''The Coming War on Tax-Evasion and Decentralized Money''

From Financial Sense

"There are two major trends taking place that are shaping up as a recipe for disaster. On the one hand, we have massively indebted governments around the world desperate for tax revenues and, on the other, steadily growing multi-trillion underground economies whose main goal is to avoid paying them.
According to a study done earlier last year, the amount of uncollected tax revenues in the US is estimated around a whopping 500 billion dollars, with the total size nearing 8 percent of America’s GDP."

''Everyone Is Wondering When Spain Will Become The New Greece''

From Automatic Earth via Business Insider

"Another week, another bout of social unrest in a Euro peripheral nation, if the fourth largest economy in the area (Spain) can even be called that. Yesterday's action saw more than a million people take to the streets in protest, while several million actually participated in the 24-hour general strike (about 77% of union workers), resulting in 176 arrests and a 104 injuries. It is estimated that 91% of all large business employees took part in the strike and/or occupied the streets. The Spanish politicians, of course, tried to downplay the rate of participation and claimed victory because the strike wasn't as bad as the last big one in 2010, but those claims merely reveal how their desperation is taking on a ridiculously childish quality at this point."

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''Spain budget deficit goals remain a serious challenge''

From Reuters UK

"The euro zone's fourth largest economy has been the focus of debt market attention since the bloc's debt crisis began on fears of the cost of Greek-style bailout if sliding investor confidence pushes lending costs up to unsustainable levels."

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"China appreciates Indian police crackdown on Tibetan protesters"

From Tibetan Review

"China on Mar 29 appreciated the “effective and concrete measures” taken by India to quell Tibetan demonstrations and ensuring safe and smooth holding of the BRICS summit in New Delhi on Mar 28-29, reported PTI news agency Mar 29. The report added that China also expressed regret over troubles created by “pro-Tibetan elements” for India ahead and during the fourth Summit of the BRICS countries of Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa.

"The Chinese side appreciates the effective and concrete measures taken by the Government of India in overcoming the disruptions and the disturbances and in ensuring the safe and smooth holding of the (BRICS) summit meeting," Director General of the Department of Asian Affairs in Chinese government Luo Zhaohui, was quoted as saying."

''China mounts online crackdown amid political crisis''

From LATimes

"China launched an Internet crackdown Friday amid its worst political crisis in decades, shuttering more than a dozen websites, limiting access to the country's largest micro-blog providers and arresting six people for spreading rumors about a coup attempt in Beijing.

The measures represent the strongest attempt yet to quash speculation that the nation’s top leadership is wracked by infighting after the ouster of Bo Xilai, the controversial Communist Partychief of mega-city Chongqing."

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Friday, March 30, 2012

''The Book the Government Doesn’t Want You to Read is a Book Everyone Must Read''

From Boiling Frogs Post and Sibel Edmonds........A True Patriot

"In this startling new memoir, Sibel Edmonds—the most classified woman in U.S. history—takes us on a surreal journey that begins with the secretive FBI and down the dark halls of a feckless Congress to a stonewalling judiciary and finally, to the national security whistleblowers movement she spearheaded. Having lived under Middle East dictatorships, Edmonds knows firsthand what can happen when government is allowed to operate in secret." 

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''We Don't Consume Resources, We Create Them''

a must read..................From 'Decline of the Empire'
By Dave Cohen

"In a recent column for Forbes, Tim Worstall makes as succinct a statement of the standard human view of natural resources as you will ever read. It's called We Don't Consume Resources, We Create Them. Tim gets right to the point, so I'll take the liberty of re-printing the entire column. I'll make my remarks afterwards."

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From the Fukushima forbidden zone: ''I intend to stay until I die''

From Tokyo Reporter

"In spite of the government-mandated 20-kilometer evacuation zone in place around the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant, one outspoken farmer still lives without electricity and running water inside, risking exposure to potentially harmful levels of radiation. Naoto Matsumura spends his days tending to livestock and a collection of pets at his residence in the town of Tomioka, located roughly five southwest kilometers southwest of the crippled plant in Fukushima Prefecture."

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also, see.....

''Students, Your Loan Interest Rate Is About to Double''

From Time

"Prepare yourself: on July 1, as many as 8 million college students will see their interest rates on federally subsidized student loans double, from 3.4% to 6.8%. According to the U.S. Public Interest Research Group, that increase amounts to the average Stafford loan borrower’s paying $2,800 more over a standard 10-year repayment term for loans made after June 30."

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''More municipalities bet on bonds to cover pensions''

this ain't good...............From Jopin Globe

"Struggling to pay employee pensions, local governments are increasingly borrowing money to cover their obligations — exploiting a loophole in federal law that allows them to issue taxable bonds without seeking voter approval.

Oakland, Calif., took a bet on its pension fund that ended up costing the city an estimated $245 million — nearly a quarter of its annual budget. That hasn’t stopped the city from looking to try its luck one more time.

The bets are being made using an exotic but increasingly popular financial instrument known as a pension obligation bond. Cities, counties and states use the bonds to take out high-interest loans from private investors to plug shortfalls in their employee pension funds."

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''Humanitarianism has become the new face of modern imperialism''

From Strategic Culture

"Humanitarian wars are a modern form of imperialism. The standard pattern that the United States and its allies use to execute them is one where genocide and ethnic cleansing are alleged by a coalition of governments, media organizations, and non-governmental front organizations which are preceded by sanctions, isolation, and military intervention. This is the post-Cold War modus operandi of the United States and NATO.

In its execution, the United Nations has been party due to the hijacking of its posts and offices by Washington. Now Kofi Annan has been appointed with a mediating role in Syria, but his position on R2P should not be overlooked. Nor should the fact that the U.S. and its allies are not interested in a mediated peace be overlooked either."

'India and China Skirt Iran Sanctions With ‘Junk for Oil’

From Bloomberg

"Iran and its leading oil buyers, China and India, are finding ways to skirt U.S. and European Union financial sanctions on the Islamic republic by agreeing to trade oil for local currencies and goods including wheat, soybean meal and consumer products.

India, the second-biggest importer of Iran's oil, has set up a rupee account at a state-owned bank to settle as much as much as 45 percent of its bill, according to Indian officials. China, Iran’s largest oil customer, already settles some of its oil debts through barter, Mahmoud Bahmani, Iran’s central bank governor, said Feb. 28. Iran also has sought to trade oil for wheat from Pakistan and Russia, according to media reports from the two countries."

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''Ron Paul Statement on House Passage of Paul Ryan Budget''

From Sun Herald

“Our nation is in dire fiscal crisis to the extent that if reforms are not instituted through the regular process of Congressional budgeting, then they will have to take place in a scenario closer to the reforms now addressing European fiscal crises.

“The Ryan budget reduces the federal government’s debt burden by trillions of dollars yet it does so in decades and not immediately, as our severe debt crisis warrants. Washington has a debt problem because the federal government spends too much, and the federal government spends too much because it tries to do too much. Any budget plan will fail to make the serious and timely spending cuts needed as long as it accepts the premise that Washington should run the economy, run our lives, and run the world."

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''Brics summit: Not just talks, but serious economic integration''

From Economic Times

''The leaders of Brics nations have adopted the idea - put forward in this column - of conducting trade between the five nations in their own currencies. Two agreements, signed among the development banks of Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa, say that local currency loans will be made available for trade between these countries.''

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''Spain to reveal deep budget cuts in sinking economy''

From Strategic Culture

''Spain will reveal deep budget cuts on Friday despite stiff popular resistance, increasing concerns that austerity measures demanded by the EU will only push the economy deeper into recession.

A day after a general strike disrupted transport, almost paralysed heavy industry and brought thousands of protesters into the streets, the conservative government must say how it can meet deficit targets that many believe it will struggle to achieve.''

''A brief history of the first corporate century''

a must read..............From Adbusters

"Modern corporations were essentially illegal at the founding of the United States (the colonists had had enough of British corporations). In the new country, corporations could form, raise public capital, and share profits with stockholders only for specified activities that benefited the public, such as constructing roads or canals. Corporate licenses were temporary. Corporations were forbidden from attempting to influence elections, lawmaking, public policy, or civil life. Imagine.

But from the beginning, corporate-minded men chafed for power, prompting Thomas Jefferson to write in 1816, “I hope we shall … crush in its birth the aristocracy of our moneyed corporations, which dare already to challenge our government to a trial of strength and bid defiance to the laws of our country."

Of the hundred wealthiest countries and corporations listed together, more than half are corporations. ExxonMobil is richer than 180 countries – and there are only about 195 countries."

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''F-35 Lifetime Cost Estimate - $1.45 Trillion''

butter, not guns.........From IBTimes

"The U.S. government now projects that the total cost to develop, buy and operate the Lockheed Martin Corp F-35 Joint Strike Fighter will be $1.45 trillion over the next 50-plus years, according to a Pentagon document obtained by Reuters."

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''Corporatism and Globalization: The Emergence of a Quasi-Religion''

From The Net Age
By Michael A Rizzotti

"In the later days of the Roman Republic the word corporation was used in documents in the same sense as collegium. The term referred to a form of legal association consisting of at least three persons. The collegium was also described as a body –corpus habere. The corporation possessed the legal right to hold property in common. It shared a treasury and could sue or be sued. The property of the corporation was liable to be seized and sold for its debts."

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''MF Global Customer and Fund Manager on JP Morgan and the Goldman Sachs Connection''


'French election plunges into ‘obsession with immigrants’

From Globe and Mail

'Samia Ghali has spent her whole political career waiting for a French election to turn its attention to the lives of her 100,000 poor, mainly Arab constituents. Now, as the presidential election descends into a debate about immigrants and Islam, she is wishing the topic hadn’t come up."

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''Pentagon sees mass layoffs if budget cuts prevail''

From Reuters

"The Pentagon said on Thursday it would expect hundreds of thousands of layoffs across the defense industry if lawmakers did not take action to avert an additional $500 billion in defense budget cuts that could take effect in January 2013.

Frank Kendall, the Defense Department's acting undersecretary for acquisition, technology and logistics, said the cuts would force the Pentagon to break many hard-won contracts with industry, including a multibillion dollar deal with Boeing Co for development of a new refueling plane."

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''Fear of China scuttles move for BRICS bank''

From Times of India

"BRICS nations on Thursday decided to examine the viability of a development bank for developing countries, besides agreeing to make it a little simpler for those trading within the group by settling transactions in local currency.

But in both cases, the outcome fell short of expectations as four members - India, Russia, Brazil and South Africa - seemed to fear the clout that China would enjoy if the proposal to set up a bank and move to a single currency went through."

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''Radio Ad Offers Discounts for City Workers During New York's Fiscal Crisis of 1975 ''

''Report: Israel's "Secret Staging Ground" Is Azerbaijan''

From Eurasia Net

"A few weeks ago, when Azerbaijan's $1.6 billion arms deal with Israel was announced, this blog discounted the idea that Azerbaijan would get involved in a potential Israeli attack on Iran, arguing that the risks for Azerbaijan are too high and the potential gains unclear. The exception would be if Azerbaijan's influence were so discreet as to allow Baku some plausible deniability; then Iran probably wouldn't stand to gain from attacking Azerbaijan. According to the FP report, the most likely use for the Azerbaijan airfields would be so that Israeli aircraft could land there after an attack, obviating the need for mid-air refueling en route to Iran, which Israel isn't particularly experienced with and which would reduce the amount of weapons the planes could take on each more

Thursday, March 29, 2012

RT: ''Peter Schiff on BRICS and the demise of the dollar''

''Brave New Bank? BRICS moot dropping dollar, IMF''


''Mortgage borrowers face triple whammy, warns Bank of England''

From The Guardian

"Lenders expect to reduce the amount of credit they give to households in the second quarter of the year in a move that economists warn is likely to curb any economic recovery.

As the Bank of England's quarterly credit conditions survey showed that lenders intended to cut credit to households in the next three months, there was also an unexpected fall in mortgage approvals."

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''Russia And India Will Trade In Local Currencies In 3 Years''

From IBTimes

"Russia and India will start trade in domestic currencies within the next three years, said the Chairman of Russian Development Bank.

Vladimir Dmitriev, chief of Vnesheconombank, was speaking to reporters on the sidelines of the BRICS summit being held in New Delhi on Thursday.  "With China it took us three years to (evolve) from initial conversations to trading in local currencies,” he said. "I think we will meet similar terms with India," he added.

These discussions are part of the initiatives taken up by member countries to improve financial cooperation among them. As part of this objective, BRICS countries will sign local currency lending deals for promoting trade and investment further among member nations."

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Zero Hedge: "Mike Krieger On When Central Banking Dies: China and Oil''

From Zero Hedge

"This ponzi is global and it will not be dismantled from the top.  Rather it’s dismantling will be fought by TPTB all the way and to the end because they know when it unravels everyone will see they were just little greedy central planning bureaucrats who brought death and destruction to the world as they played out their fantasies with our lives hanging in the balance."


''BRICS nations warn of any attack on Iran''

From Asian Tribune

"Concerned over the situation developing around Iran's nuclear issue, India, China, Russia, Brazil and South Africa on Thursday warned any military action could result in "disastrous consequences" and pushed for dialogue and diplomatic efforts to resolve the problem.

At a Summit meeting in Delhi, the five-nation grouping BRICS also expressed worries over the situation in Syria and called for an immediate end to all violence and violations of human rights while seeking solutions only through Syrian-led inclusive political process."

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''BRICS pushes hard for a new global order''

From Livemint

"New Delhi: The five emerging economies under the BRICS umbrella on Thursday, aware of their growing global stature, offered the most audacious challenge to the old economic order by proposing to trade among themselves in their local currencies.

Not only will it reduce trade transaction costs, it will, if implemented, most certainly challenge the domination of the dollar in global trade, besides reasserting the economic clout of the BRICS grouping of Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa."

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'BRICs attack QE and urge Western leaders to be 'responsible'

From The Telegraph

"It is critical for advanced economies to adopt responsible macro-economic and financial policies, avoid creating excessive liquidity and undertake structural reforms to lift growth," Russia, Brazil, India, China and South Africa said in a joint statement.

The leaders of the countries met at a one-day summit in the Indian capital New Delhi, and also turned their fire on the pace of reform at the International Monetary Fund (IMF). The US has yet to approve changes to voting rights at the IMF that were tabled in 2010 and would give a greater voice to those countries with growing economic muscle in the world."

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''BRICS members sign pact to trade in local currencies''

From Zee News India

"Taking note of uncertainty in global political and economic situation, India, China, Russia, Brazil and South Africa on Thursday took the first step towards mutual trade in local currency and voiced strong opposition to any military action or rhetoric with regard to Syria and Iran.

At their Summit meeting, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, Chinese President Hu Jintao, Russian President Dmitry Medvedev, Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff and South African President Jacob Zuma pitched for close coordination among the five leading economies to meet the challenges being witnessed in the global scenario."

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''Bye-bye Dollar: BRICS doesn't trust the buck''


''Senate rejects Obama call to end Big Oil tax breaks''

From Reuters

"Republicans in the Senate blocked legislation on Thursday to strip billions of dollars in tax breaks for the biggest U.S. oil companies, calling the bill a political stunt that would not help tamp down surging gasoline prices.

President Barack Obama, under pressure as the pinch of higher gasoline prices becomes a hot issue in the U.S. presidential campaign, had urged Congress to end the breaks, worth about $24 billion over 10 years, noting oil companies were raking in record profits."

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''Lessons Detroit can learn from other municipal restructurings''

From Freep

"Michigan and Detroit policymakers have less than eight days to make a decision on what to do about Detroit’s fiscal emergency. One policy option is a Financial Control Board (FCB), which essentially replaces home rule with state control over the city’s finances." 

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''Hillary’s Busybodies Looking for New Excuses To Meddle In Asia''

From 'There are no Sunglasses'

"The Americans found a new job in Central Asia after they leave Afghanistan. Yes, however, will be engaged in it, even if there will …

So, note that the mouth of America Secretary of State Hillary Clinton announced a new initiative – "Partnership for the U.S. Water Resources." So it will be created in the United States called public-private partnerships to improve water management worldwide. Americans can not refuse in the ambitious claims, they are not shy to admit his ideas of globality. But this time it is not about planting democracy and not about the battles for alternative delivery routes of Central Asian hydrocarbons. All serious and I would say, no alternative."

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Pepe Escobar: ''War porn: The new safe sex''

From Asia Times

"Like porn, war porn cannot exist without being based on a lie - a crude representation. But unlike porn, war porn is the real thing; unlike crude, cheap snuff movies, people in war porn actually die - in droves.

The lie to finish all lies at the center of this representation was definitely established with the leak of the 2005 Downing Street memo, in which the head of the British MI6 confirmed that the Bush administration wanted to take out Iraq's Saddam Hussein by linking Islamic terrorism with (non-existent) weapons of mass destruction (WMD). So, as the memo put it, "The intelligence and facts were being fixed around the policy."

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''Who Captured the Fed?''

From NYTimes

"A hundred years ago, monetary policy – control over interest rates and the availability of credit – was viewed as a highly contentious political issue. People on the left of the political spectrum feared the central bank would be used to prop up Wall Street banks; those on the right thought it would unduly expand the role of government, giving too much power to politicians.

In the 1980s we entered a phase in which the Federal Reserve, along with other major central banks around the world, was seen as independent and run by technocrats supposedly immune from political pressure.

But in the light of the crisis of 2008 and its aftermath, we have to ask: Has our central bank fallen back under the influence of special interests?

The origins of the Federal Reserve System lie in an emotional debate, conducted more than 100 years ago, about whether the government should seek to affect interest rates – and support the credit of Wall Street firms during times of crisis – and, if so, how."

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''China To Reinforce Territorial Claims in South China Sea, Despite Opposition''

From Maritime Executive

"As China is in the midst of several maritime disputes with its neighbors, the country has announced that it is currently mapping the South China Sea (SCS) with the intended goal of oil and gas exploration, as well as to underline its territorial claims. Geographical surveys of the area are underway.

By creating this map, China can reinforce its jurisdiction claim in the SCS, and follow up with developing resources near the Nansha Islands. China claims the entire sea as its own; Vietnam, Philippines, Malaysia, Brunei and Taiwan all oppose this claim however, and state their involvement in maritime territory."

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UK: "House prices fall as stamp duty holiday ends"

From The Telegraph

"Prices fell year-on-year by 0.9pc in March, the first annual drop in six months, to reach £162,712 on average, according to the Nationwide report.

It predicted that prices will head sideways or downwards over the coming year as the weak economy acts as a continuing "drag."

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''Is the US Dollar Headed for a Major Fall?''

From Financial Sense
By Julian Phillips

"Most investors were not around when the ailing dollar moved from a suspect currency to number 1. When the Gold Window was closed by President Nixon, the dollar weakened and the gold price took off to heights never been seen before.

At the time it seems insane to cut the link of the dollar to gold. From 1968 to 1971 Europe had been receiving dollars from the U.S. forces stationed in Europe and called them Eurodollars. European nation were not happy to receive this currency and were busy converting as much as they could to gold. Led by the cantankerous and difficult President de Gaulle Switzerland, Germany, Italy and France were the main sellers of dollars for gold.

You can imagine the U.S. government facing President de Gaulle and telling them calmly that they had better accept the U.S. dollar in payment for all things imported and must purchase the U.S. dollar to pay for all things American, as well as oil. It was checkmate! Failure to obey would have led to a major oil crisis for the disobedient nation."

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''BRICS Move To Replace Dollar With “Super-Sovereign” Global Currency''

From Alexander Higgins via Activist Post

"As China is expected to rise to the status of a financial superpower within the next 8 years and eclipse the US economy by 2020, Africa becomes center stage in the greatest currency war the world has seen since the 1930s, which is now shifting into overdrive.

Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa, collectively known as the BRICS nations, are moving forward with their plan to unseat the US dollar from its throne as the global trade currency and to replace it with a Chinese-denominated “super-sovereign” international currency."

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''The Lesson From Iceland’s Economic Recovery: Let Banks Go Bust''

From Money Morning Australia

"The sovereign debt crises around the world rumble on. If it isn’t the UK and other European countries being downgraded or threatened with downgrades by credit rating agencies, then it’s the latest twists in the Greek saga.

However, some countries are having their credit ratings raised. Fitch has just upgraded Icelandic debt to BBB-. This means that all three major agencies, (the other two being Standard & Poor’s and Moody’s) consider Icelandic debt to be investment grade once again. It costs nearly the same amount to insure Belgian debt against default as it does that of Iceland’s government."

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''Al-Qaeda In Iraq’s Strategy For 2012''

From Eurasia Review

"It was an ordinary early morning in Baghdad in February 2012. Mothers and fathers were stuck in the grueling traffic of the capital, on their way to work. Their children were all packed up and ready to go to school. Shops were opening up in Baghdad’s market, hoping to profit from the morning rush hour. Then, at a moment’s notice, Iraqis in Baghdad and several other Iraqi cities found themselves in the middle of a coordinated series of terrorist attacks. The streets were literally painted red with blood, human body parts spread all over the concrete."

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''BRICS summit: Tibetans taken into preventive custody''

from ibn live...

''Moscow concerned about Washington plans to ship arms to Georgia''

From Interfax

"Moscow has expressed its concerns to Washington over U.S. plans to ship weapons to the Georgian contingent in the International Assistance Force in Afghanistan, Russian Foreign Ministry spokesmen Alexander Lukashevich said.

"We have reacted by referring a note to the U.S. Embassy and by expressing our concern," he said at a press briefing in Moscow on Tuesday."

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''Libya’s ‘non state’: Tribal war claims 70 lives''


"70 have been killed and dozens injured in Libya as tribal groups are fighting in the country’s south. After the overthrow of Muammar Gaddafi, Libya is left in a condition which some residents call a ‘non state’.

The fighting between rival armed militias, ongoing since Sunday, has spilled into the center of Libya’s third largest city of Sabha on Tuesday. The country’s National Transitional Council initially sent out 300 of its troops to calm the situation but the contingent had to be reinforced two-fold, Reuters said."

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Castro and The Pope

From Miami Herald

"Bidding farewell to Cuba after a three-day visit that included a pilgrimage to the national shrine of Our Lady of Charity, two open-air masses before hundreds of thousand of people, and private meetings with Fidel and Raúl Castro, Pope Benedict XVI said he would pray for the nation’s future and that “Cuba will become the house of all and for all Cubans, where liberty and justice can coexist in a climate of serene brotherhood."

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''Pakistan to hold talks with Russian Gazprom for Iran Pakistan project on April 2''

From Pakistan Today

"After the ditching of the Chinese led consortium to undertake Iran-Pakistan (IP) gas pipeline project due to stern US warnings, Pakistan has decided to approach Russian energy giant Gazprom for the construction of the pipeline.

Secretary Petroleum Ejaz Chaudhary talking to journalists on Wednesday said that a Pakistani delegation will be visiting Moscow on April 2 to hold two days talks with Gazprom for laying IP pipeline."

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''MF Global Treasurer Declines to Answer Questions From Panel''

From Bloomberg

"Edith O’Brien, the MF Global Holdings Ltd. (MF) assistant treasurer who has become a key figure in the disappearance of as much as $1.6 billion in customer funds, declined to answer questions from U.S. lawmakers.

O’Brien, who appeared today under subpoena before a House Financial Services subcommittee, invoked her constitutional right against self-incrimination during a hearing on the New York firm’s Oct. 31 bankruptcy, the eighth largest in U.S. history."

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''Building BRICS for a new world''

From Hindustan Times

''With the BRICS summit starting on Thursday, the leaders of five emerging economies are all set to unveil a blueprint that will further their economic clout as well as strike political positions on global issues.

BRICS, touted as the new growth poles of the world, accounts for 25% of the global GDP, 18% of trade, 40% of the world's foreign exchange, and nearly half its population.

Since the last summit in Sanya, China, the grouping has decided to add greater political content to deliberations. 
The leaders will focus on fostering the intra-group trade, which has grown to an impressive 28% over the last few years.''

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''Pressure from Weapons Industry Leads to Renewed Military Aid to Egypt''

From 'There are no Sunglasses'

"Election year pressure from the U.S. weapons industry succeeded last week in persuading Secretary of State Hillary Clinton to release $1.3 billion in military aid to Egypt by using her authority under a new law to waive a requirement that she certify that Egypt’s interim military regime is protecting human rights."

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''Afghanistan decides to quit TAPI project''

From Daily Times

"Afghanistan has decided to opt out of the Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan-India (TAPI) pipeline project and if Afghanistan does, then its share of 500 million cubic feet per day (mmcfd) gas will be distributed between Pakistan and India.

This was stated by Petroleum Secretary Ejaz Chaudhary while talking to a group of energy reporters on Wednesday.'

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Wednesday, March 28, 2012


From Revolution Radio

"Under the category of “Extremely Important,” I have placed the following TWO releases from Jim Sinclair – front and center in today’s Daily.


Sinclair has sounded the warning siren on the two events that will define the gold market for the next several years: QE to infinity, as the Fed will continue to execute its purchases of US Treasuries, and misguided use of the SWIFT system in a form of “economic warfare” leading to the US dollar’s loss of prominence as the world’s Reserve Currency. This will lead to the dollar’s demise and it will first test 72.0 on the USDX and then drop below the all-important support level on the way to Hell. The clock is now ticking. The time available to you to switch out of the dollar and into the safety of precious metals is waning."

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Nigel Farage - ''Western World Collaborated in Giant Ponzi Scheme''

From King World News

"Farge warned of troubles surround the most recent Greek bailout: “Before the second bailout was completed, they were talking about the third.  The definition of insanity is to continue doing something that goes wrong, without contemplating that there could be a different course of action.

It is madness.  We’re wasting our money.  We’re pouring it down the drain.  None of this is going to work.  Mr. Monti can be as complacent as he likes, but I’m quite sure that when the history of this period is written, people like that will be lampooned for what they’ve said today."

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''Falklands oil hunt sparks local hopes, Argentine protests''

From Reuters

"Few people are tracking the ups and downs of the British companies looking for oil off the disputed Falkland Islands as closely as islanders themselves.

The search for black gold in South Atlantic waters claimed by Argentina has even persuaded some residents to dabble in the stock market as they bet on a windfall that could guarantee their small community's prosperity for decades to come."

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Steve Lendman: "The Criminal Class in Washington is Bipartisan''

From Steve Lendman Blog

"Inside the Beltway, it's evident daily. The political news website Capitol Hill Blue says "Nobody's life, liberty or property is safe while Congress is in session or the White House is occupied."

Electoral politics also highlights its clear and present danger. It involves rogue politicians competing to be part of Washington's corrupted duopoly run system - especially the top job as president."

''Eclipse of the old world order''

From China Daily

"The wealthy, but stagnating, economies do not want change. They would like the world to stay as it is. The poorer, but rapidly growing, economies do want change. They would like to realize the world as it could be.

In the long run both need each other. But advanced economies will seek to retain the status quo, while history will be fueled by the large emerging economies.

With the emerging world pressing for change and the advanced world clinging to the past, it is in the context of a faltering world economy that the fourth BRICS Summit is held in India, on Wednesday and Thursday."

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''India to become world's largest economy by 2050''


"India will become the world's largest economy by 2050, surpassing its neighbour China, says a report.

"China will overtake the US to become the world's largest economy by 2020, which in turn will be overtaken by India in 2050," according to Wealth Report 2012 by Knight Frank & Citi Private Bank.

As per the report, Indian economy will reach $ 85.97 trillion size in terms of purchasing power parity by 2050, while the Chinese GDP would be $ 80.02 trillion during the same period."

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''National Health Insurance Debate Under Nixon''

''Foreclosure Fraud Whistleblower Harassed by Mortgage Lender''

From Firedoglake
By David Dayen

"I’ve written before about Lynn Szymoniak, the foreclosure victim and anti-fraud expert who lodged a one-woman crusade against the banks’ faulty assignments and documents. You may know her from her appearance on 60 Minutes, blowing the whistle on foreclosure fraud. As part of the foreclosure fraud settlement, Szymoniak won an $18 million judgment for her work in helping expose document fraud. However, she has to wait at least a couple months for the formal blessing of the settlement by a US district court judge to reap her reward. Meanwhile, she is still in foreclosure proceedings with Deutsche Bank. And they are going out of their way to humiliate her."

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''Banking with Hitler''

from bbc..

''Rand Paul blocks Iran sanctions bill''

good for him..........From Politico

"Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) blocked an effort Tuesday to quickly pass a bipartisan bill imposing tough sanctions on Iran, demanding that Congress make clear that the United States is not rushing into another war.

"Our young men and women, our soldiers, deserve thoughtful debate," Paul, the tea party freshman with libertarian leanings, said on the floor. "Before sending our young men and women into combat, we should have a mature and thoughtful debate over the ramifications of war, over the advisability of war and over the objectives of war."

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''BRICS not ‘obliged’ to follow U.S. sanctions on Iran''

From The Hindu

"India, China and other BRICS countries on Wednesday said they will not severe their trade ties with oil-rich Iran, which is facing U.S. sanctions against its nuclear programme.

The issue came up for discussion at a meeting of trade ministers of Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa (BRICS), a day ahead of the BRICS summit in New Delhi.

“Yes, this was discussed. All BRICS members are members of the UNSC. We respect U.N. the same time the resolution does not forbid countries to engage in trade in essential commodities and what is required for human good,” Commerce and Industry Minister Anand Sharma said, addressing a joint press conference with other BRICS trade ministers."

''China's African Odyssey''

From WSJ

"Roughly one million Chinese nationals are working or doing business in Africa, from Egypt's Mediterranean shore to South Africa's Cape of Good Hope.

Theirs are the faces behind China's soaring direct investment in Africa— which, according to China's Ministry of Commerce—rose 87% to $1.1 billion during the first three quarters last year compared to the same period 2010. China's Ministry of Commerce said the value of all China-Africa trade between January and September last year topped $122 billion—a record amount that was equal to total two-way trade for all 2010."

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''War fears after Sudan, S Sudan clashes''

From South Africa News24

"Sudanese warplanes hit South Sudan's oil-rich border region in a third day of violence between the rival states, as international concern mounted over a return to an all-out war.

Fighting on the ground had reportedly ceased on both sides of the undemarcated border but dead bodies and destroyed tanks lay strewn in Sudan's contested oil centre of Heglig, the site of bloody battles that began on Monday."

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''Americans want a "protect America first" policy, not a "send Americans first" one''

From National Interest

"Americans are quite concerned about the nation’s deficit: 82 percent believe the nation’s economic challenges are a bigger concern than our military challenges. Voters have different ideas for how to solve this problem, but only 35 percent of voters would exempt the Pentagon from spending cuts, as Rep. Paul Ryan’s (R-WI) plan does (actually, the Ryan plan increases military spending slightly, while cutting nearly everything else). There is some support for cutting military spending despite the fact that 81 percent of voters have a favorable opinion of the military."

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''Obama’s olive branch to Putin''

From Indian Punchline

............."the consummate diplomat that he is, Obama virtually signalled from Seoul the US-Russia reset is ‘on’, no matter the change of guard in the Kremlin.
Why did he signal that? For one thing, Obama counts on Moscow not to queer the pitch on a range of issues that hold the potential to disrupt international security (and his re-election bid in November) — Iran, Syria, Afghanistan.
Washington played it rough during Putin’s bid in the March 4 election. But the Russians are large-hearted people. Moscow will now patiently wait for Obama’s second term in the Oval Office. After all, Obama held out a ‘presidential assurance’ on the one issue that matters to Russia’s foreign and security policies most in the coming decades — its nuclear parity with the US (what Moscow calls ’strategic balance)."

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''Pakistan opposition blocks NATO route''

From Asia Times 

"Pakistan opposition parties are moving to block the reopening of North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) supply routes into neighboring Afghanistan ahead of crucial deliberations to set new terms of engagement with the United States.

The country's major right-wing opposition party, led by former prime minister Nawaz Sharif, and key religio-political parties, have taken a unified stand at a joint sitting of the senate and the national assembly, which was due to resume on Wednesday evening. The joint session will conclude by voting on proposals about potential ties with the US and the future of the NATO supply route that passes through Pakistani territory."

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ROBERT SHILLER: ''Suburban Home Prices Will Not Rebound In Our Lifetime''

thanks wall st...........From Business Insider

"Many young people are choosing to live at home for a longer period of time instead of buying. Moreover, would-be homebuyers are settling into modern apartments and condominiums, further hindering a housing rally.

Shiller says the shift toward renting and city living could mean “that we will never in our lifetime see a rebound in these prices in the suburbs.”A perpetually sluggish housing market, which Shiller believes has become “more and more political,” might push the country in a “Japan-like slump that will go on for years and years."

''Did CNN Just Lose HALF Of Its Viewers?''

From Business Insider

"As TVNewser's Chris Ariens reported today: "CNN bore the brunt of the downward trend the news networks experienced this month and for much of the first quarter, when compared to the busy first few months of 2011. For the month of March, CNN was down -50% in total viewers and down -60% in A25-54 viewers (Total Day). The net was down -21% in Total Viewers and down -26% in A25-54 viewers (Primetime) compared to March 2011."

The viewer exodus is not limited to CNN, though. Roger Ailes' aging heavyweight champion FOX News "was not immune to a loss in viewership for the month of March and for the first quarter of 2012. For the month, Fox News is down -17%," according to another post by Ariens."

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''How the New American Empire Really Works''

From Counter Punch
By Paul Craig Roberts

"America’s wars are very expensive.  Bush and Obama have doubled the national debt, and the American people have no benefits from it. No riches, no bread and circuses flow to Americans from Washington’s wars.  So what is it all about?

The answer is that Washington’s empire extracts resources from the American people for the benefit of the few powerful interest groups that rule America. The military-security complex, Wall Street, agri-business and the Israel Lobby use the government to extract resources from Americans to serve their profits and power. The US Constitution has been extracted in the interests of the Security State, and Americans’ incomes have been redirected to the pockets of the 1 percent.  That is how the American Empire functions."

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''Brazil and India discussing military accord based on the French Rafale fighter jet''

From Merco Press

"On Wednesday/Thursday Rousseff is to attend the New Delhi summit of the BRICS (Brazil, China, India, Russia and South Africa) nations aiming to discuss increased cooperation among the five emerging powers, including the establishment of their own development bank.

The next day Rousseff will begin a state visit in India, and officials say the Rafale, which India has selected for its air force, will be a top agenda item."

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''Argentina warns UK and US market regulators about ‘illicit’ oil activities in the Falklands''

From Merco Press

"The Argentine government has triggered a series of measures against oil companies conducting exploration or drilling activities in the Falklands/Malvinas Islands as announced a week ago by Foreign Minister Héctor Timerman."

"In the letters to markets Argentina points out that Argos Resources Limited, Borders & Southern Petroleum PLC, Desire Petroleum PLC, Falkland Oil and Gas Limited ay Rockhopper Exploration PLC are “illicitly involved in hydrocarbons exploration activities in the Argentine continental platform and thus exposed to administrative, civil and criminal sanctions."

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''Retiring Senator Ben Nelson Refuses To Disclose Any Job Negotiations With Lobbyists''

From Republic Report   

"Selling out pays. Members of Congress who retire to become lobbyists get huge paydays. We looked at just a dozen federal lawmakers who went through the revolving door and found that they get, on average, 1,452% raises."

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''McCain predicts "huge" U.S. campaign finance scandals''

From Reuters

"The U.S. campaign finance system is so heavily influenced by big-spending interest groups and wealthy individuals that it will take "huge scandals" to change it - and those scandals are looming, Senator John McCain said Tuesday.

McCain, speaking at a Reuters forum on money in politics, gave a blistering critique of U.S. Supreme Court justices over a 2010 ruling that lifted limits on political fundraising and spending by corporations, unions and other non-campaign groups by equating their rights to those of individual citizens."

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Book Review: "White House Burning"

From Counter Punch

"The basic thesis of White House Burning is that the country is on an unsustainable fiscal path. Unlike some of the Chicken Littles leading the budget debate, Johnson and Kwak are responsible in how they lay out the case. There is no nonsense about runaway government spending. They explicitly refute this story. Most categories of government spending, except defense, have remained constant or fallen as a share of GDP since the budget surplus days of the late 90s."

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Tuesday, March 27, 2012

''Short-term fix for Detroit: Borrow $137 million; but some opposed measure''

From Freep

"In an effort to stabilize a city teetering on bankruptcy, the Detroit City Council on approved borrowing millions of dollars to help address a cash-flow problem that could lead to payless paydays and service cuts.

And Deputy Mayor Kirk Lewis was looking for even money, but from the state. Lewis insisted that any agreement between the state and city to avoid the appointment of an emergency manager would need to come with an additional infusion of cash from the state."

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